Sometimes he calls out for Baby. Sometimes Baby runs

Sara Burge

down our street screaming, his voice chasing
like a pissy wasp. Sometimes he’s an Apache helicopter.
Sometimes Baby’s a mouse on a rug. Sometimes
their fights are a riff on last night’s and sometimes
the audio flubs so I can’t tell why he’s screaming
this is all Baby’s fucking fault.
I keep my phone close.
Sometimes they’re a honky-tonk song I’ve heard so many times
they’re memorized. Sometimes Baby’s a bomb
and it’s a race to see who creates the most mass destruction.
Sometimes it’s autumn and I just want him to shut up
but Baby’s in the backyard whispering her defense until
Baby pops, Baby’s headed down the street, now Baby’s gone.
I won’t give Baby up. I like Baby best when she’s a bomb.

Sara Burge is the author of Apocalypse Ranch (C&R Press), and her poetry has appeared in Virginia Quarterly Review, Willow Springs, Prairie Schooner, CALYX Journal, The Louisville Review, Atticus Review, River Styx, and elsewhere. She is a Pushcart and Best of the Net Nominee and serves as the Poetry Editor of Moon City Review. Featured work can be found at

Artwork: “Story Time” by Shagufta Mulla

Acrylic on 9×12 cradled wood panel

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